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~$2000 System

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January 30, 2012 10:49:36 PM

Hey guys, first time poster here, but I've been lurking for a few days now. I've been researching and weighing the pro's and con's of new builds I could do, and I'm 50/50 on buying a system built around LGA 2011 or around LGA 1155.. I've read Ivy Bridge comes out in April and works on LGA 1155, and that's quite tempting.. but I want to purchase my new computer within 1-1 1/2 months.

I've had the rig I'm using how for over 4 years, and have only replaced a few items on it; namely the video cards (started with Geforce 8800 GT x2 SLI) and a lesser power supply. Other than that everything else is the same. Here are the specs as of today:

Asus M2N32-Sli Deluxe
AMD Athlon 64 X2 3000+
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460
Kingston 4GB DDR2
Corsair 850W PSU
WD 1 TB HDD
Older model NZXT Full ATX Case
Monitor/Keyboard/Mouse/Speaker System (not important)

I can run newer games on Mid-range graphics, but truly, I want a more powerful rig. I've decided to use this one as more of a work computer for school and other miscellanea. This new rig will be my gaming computer that I'll use on my 42" HDTV. Keep in mind I want to future proof my system for 2+ years. Here is what I've selected so far:

Case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - Not really sure I'm gung-ho about this board; read many negative reviews of the product itself and terrible customer service through Asrock. Would prefer a better product. And I'm aware no computer product is built totally perfect; there are going to be defects, etc. Still seems to be one of the more solid LGA 1155 PCI-Express 3.0 mobos around though.

Video Card: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - Like I mentioned before, I'm not very familiar with Radeon video card brands or the quality of products therein. I've heard Sapphire and XFX are quality brands to look for, but I'm not totally sure?

Despite that, I have done research regarding the benchmarks of the HD 7970 vs the GTX 580, and also the GTX 560 Ti (my original purchase was going to have 2 of these in SLI), and the HD 7970 seems like a very solid purchase, despite the price.

PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - I justify this by my future-proof argument... If I am going to add another HD 7970 later on and run Crossfire, or I'm going to add a new Processor later... I want to be sure I've got enough horsepower to run it. Probably not going to budge on this one, as I've had PSU issues in the past and it left a very bad stain in my memory :p 

CPU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - Heard the arguments from both sides on the i5 2500k vs the i7 2600k and I decided to go with the 2600k. The price difference isn't a big detriment for me, and the hyper threading isn't going to bother me, to be sure.

Fans & Heatsink: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Memory: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - Will be getting 2 of these.

Keyboard: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mouse: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Blu-Ray Drive: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Accessories: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... x2 and http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's my current build, based around LGA 1155 architecture. Comes out to ~2500. I am revolving my new purchase around being future-proofed, using PCI-Express 3.0 video cards, and effectively nullifying any need for a computer purchase for years to come. What do you guys think about it? Pretty solid? I think it's probably overkill as it already is, but I don't really know if LGA 2011 is worth or not.

As the LGA 2011 mobo's and processors came out very recently, I'm trying to reconcile spending even MORE money than I already have (and I may trim off a bit till a later time, like the keyboard and mouse and just borrow my current set, stuff like that) on a new model of mobo and processor...

I've seen specs and charts of both, and I'm aware of the increase in potential for dual-channel to quad-channel for RAM... I suppose what I really need is someone who is knowledgeable of both to give me a breakdown of pros and cons? Perhaps known benchmark percentages? Would the cost of upgrading to LGA 2011 within 1 month be outweighed by the system performance increase? If so, what boards would you suggest?

tl;dr: Have 4 year old computer, want to upgrade. Split about buying into LGA 2011 or LGA 1155 builds. Definitely wanting to buy sooner than later, i.e. not waiting for Ivy Bridge.

Sorry for how long this post is! Wanted to be clear and concise. ^^'


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January 30, 2012 11:20:34 PM

good choice on the case, i love the look of nzxt and the one i have is quality. i reckon you should definitely go for the 1155, but go for the z68 chipset.

cheap option but its ASrock and you were iffy on the brand, but i've heard great things about this board and supports crossfire, usb 3.0, sata 3, pcie 3.0..all the bells and whistles for $118:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

this MSI is tomshardware approved and a more expensive option to consider for ~$199:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

go for the new cooler master hyper 212 evo.. basically same price and it's new and improved:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

one bold option you can consider is to buy a cheap 1155 processor, such as the pentium g630 or g860 for $79 or $99 respectively, and upgrade to ivy bridge in april.
pentium G630 - $79 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

in this article TM found that in gaming they KILL, and with your 7970 you'll be able to handle all games. very interesting, cheap, and future-proof option to consider. only thing is you'd be "renting" a cheap processor for a few months.. but you could potentially use it in your old build.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-fx-pentium-a...

it's hard justifying you spending so much on that powersupply... and the wattage is ridiculous, but something like this is a great, efficient, reliable PSU that will handle your whole build with one 7970. crossfiring a 7970 seems lunatic to me, only if you were doing double/triple monitor displays with crazy resolution would you ever need that.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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January 30, 2012 11:31:36 PM

Regarding the Z68 boards, I read a few different places that talked about the Z68's and their SSD Caching (not necessary if you use a physical SSD, I gathered) vs the P67's being all around more gamer-friendly (optimized for better processing power or somesuch) I'll try to dredge up the article I read if you'd like, but it was pretty convincing and methodical. Not to mention a few articles on tomshardware. Something to keep in mind though, as I am not looking to spend more money unless I have too >_<

And purchasing a cheaper processor until April is indeed an option.. Perhaps the i5 2500k? Just off the top of my head, seems like it'd be quite a bit cheaper than the i7-2600k. It's one of the best on the market for gaming and pretty cost-effective, and will *definitely* tide me over till Ivy Bridge drops.. Hmm.

The PSU is quite a lot, I admit. I've thought about toning it down a bit but 750w seems a bit low.

What are your thoughts on LGA 2011 vs LGA 1155? That's where I'm really torn at. =\
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January 30, 2012 11:37:14 PM

X79 is best for upgradeability.
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Best solution

January 30, 2012 11:38:39 PM

i don't think lga 2011 is necessary... cheapest 2011 board is $218...which i hate, and you'd have to pair it with this processor :ouch:  $600:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

for gaming, which ultimately is the main reason of your build, a $600 hexacore does absolutely no good. even the i7 2600k is overkill compared to the 2500k and has no tangible benefits in gaming.

so with the 1155 you can get your ivy bridge on, and i'd suggest either buying a cheap pentium to tide you over til ivy bridge, or get the 2500k (or 2600k), add a nice overclock in the 4.5ghz range, and profit.
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January 30, 2012 11:52:50 PM

Yeah, I'm going to go with a LGA 1155 board for now. I just needed someone to tip me in favor of one or the other because my conscience was split. Your advice, and Ivy Bridge supporting LGA 1155 sold me. Thanks for all your help bud!
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January 30, 2012 11:53:03 PM

Best answer selected by Wookieomg.
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January 31, 2012 12:02:23 AM

Wookieomg said:
Yeah, I'm going to go with a LGA 1155 board for now. I just needed someone to tip me in favor of one or the other because my conscience was split. Your advice, and Ivy Bridge supporting LGA 1155 sold me. Thanks for all your help bud!


for sure! yeah i mean it's nice to have that upgrade availability in the future. i've got a i5 750 on the 1156 socket, and it's frustrating that i can't upgrade to the 2500k or the new ivy bridge. but if i were in your shoes, i'd probably go for the i5 2500k paired with the seasonic power supply. it seems like your old rig was definitely bottle-necked by the CPU, because the gtx 460 is a pretty good card. maybe put that card into your new rig and see how much it helps to have a top of the line processor paired with your video card on the FPS.
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